My name is Sarah Hamel, and I am the School Psychologist at Leesville Middle School. Helping our students and schools focus on recognizing and developing team players is at the heart of national School Psychology Awareness Week, November 11–15, 2013. The theme, “We’re all in! Teams work.” is directed to students, but also carries an important message to all adults. Parents you can help us build and celebrate your children’s participation on teams and building effective teamwork!
- Discover effective team building skills your children already have (explore your child’s team building skills and how they differ from those of others).
- Encourage family discussions regarding the teams in which the adults and the children participate. Be sure to highlight individual team building strengths across all family members; everyone’s collaborative skills may be different but they are all important to share.
- Come together for a good cause. Show the strength of working together as a family, a group, or a team to help the community.
- Join a team! Model effective team work by joining a team or group such as the PTA, coaching a recreational team, or even joining a book club. Help your children understand the qualities needed to be an effective team player by watching you participate in a variety of teams.
- Use your team work skills to make a difference. Give students the opportunity volunteer with a local cause such as Special Olympics, local fundraising campaigns, or Habitat for Humanity. They may be surprised how much of a difference they can make using effective team work skills.
A student’s life at school is filled with many opportunities to learn, grow, and excel. Children can develop and improve their skills across several academic, social, athletic, or musical areas in education. Participating in an academic team, recreational team, or educational group can enhance a child’s school experience. Teaching our children the importance of building relationships through positive teaming helps them to develop interpersonal skills and a commitment to the group.
Acknowledgements and encouragement from educators and parents are essential to making school an enjoyable place to learn and help children to achieve their individual goals. Identifying and sharing effective team building skills, and the interpersonal skills necessary to work collaboratively with peers and adults, can build resiliency in children as well as the ability to meet challenges successfully.